P2P lending platform Faircent has received its NBFC-P2P certification from the Reserve Bank of India. The RBI issued those guidelines last October, to register and accredit P2P lending firms that resell loans from individuals who have money to invest. Faircent is the first P2P lender to get this certification from the RBI.

Faircent essentially connects lenders with spare money with borrowers; the platform currently has more than 40,000 registered lenders and 3.5 lakh registered borrowers and has facilitated over 6,000 loans cumulatively till date.

Funding and competition

In December, Faircent raised series B funding of $4 million from Belgium-based Incofin, Muthoot Fincorp, and others.

In May 2016, it raised series A funding of undisclosed amount from JM Financial Products Ltd, $1.5 million from BCCL’s Brand Capital in August. In October 2015, Faircent secured an undisclosed funding from Mohandas Pai’s  Aarin Capital Partners. In June 2015, the company had raised $250,000 in its pre-series A funding round from Singapore-based M&S Partners. Before that in January same year, it raised $4 million from Fusion Microfinance’s promoters Devesh Sachdev and Ashish Tiwari.

Faircent competes with companies like Paytm-backed CreditMate, CASHe, LendingKart, MoneyTap, EarlySalry, LoanMeet amongst others.

RBI regulations

According to the guidelines put out by the RBI last year, the P2P platforms will act as only as an online intermediary and not raise deposits. These platforms will only act as a facilitator between different parties, and cannot provide any credit enhancement or credit guarantee. The RBI also directs that these companies cannot cross-sell other any product except for loan specific insurance products, and are not permitted international flow of funds. Also, the P2P lending platforms are supposed to undertake due diligence on the participants including credit assessment and risk profiling of the borrowers and disclose the same to their prospective lenders. They will also have to take prior and explicit consent of participants to access their credit information. The guidelines add that, the platforms will have to provide assistance in disbursement and repayments of loan amount and render services for recovery of loans originated on the platform.